SOUTH GLENS FALLS, N.Y. – The 37th annual South High Marathon Dance wrapped up late Saturday night, a full 28-hours after festivities began.
After hours of dancing, going over donations, and recognizing students for their fundraising efforts, organizers unveiled the big tally: $583,015.14 raised. A new record blasting far past last year's top total of $489,716.
The South High Marathon is the largest high school dance marathon in the country. Students spend up to 28-hours dancing and moving in the high school gym in an effort to raise money for local charities and people facing hardship.
This year, the money will be split up amongst 39 beneficiaries picked by the dance's student committee.
When it started 37-years ago, South High boasted just 50 dancers. This year, the school says they were more than 800-participants strong.
Devon Sweenor is a junior at South Glens Falls.
"I'm so proud to be a part of the school right now," he said. "So proud that everyone is coming together to help his out."
The goal of the marathon is to raise money for 39 people facing challenges like Crystal Gates who attended the dance.
"A little overwhelming," she said. "A lot overwhelming."
Gates is fighting ovarian cancer and has to travel to Philadelphia for treatment.
"The help alone that they're going to give me is going to be able to allow me to continue to go there for treatment," she said.
And participating students, like senior Bethany Warren, are proud to be part of it.
"I am so proud of our school and every single one of them," she said. "I am so happy I'm part of this district I wouldn't change it for the world.
"Yeah, it's truly amazing," she said. "I've never experienced anything like this before.
The dance marathon kicked-off Friday at 7 p.m. at the South High School gym in South Glens Falls and officially wrapped up just minutes before 11 p.m. Saturday.
Head to the South High Marathon Dance website for more on this year's event.
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